December was a busy month and covered just about every emotion. Our 9 year old great niece lost her very heroic battle with cancer. Random turned 15 and Lily had another surgery.
A very special box from Japan arrived for the kids with the instructions that they had to wait until Christmas to open it! Inside was a gift for each of them from our exchange student Tianyu. Here, the girls model their gifts!
Anyone who lives in Minnesota can tell you that this has been the winter of snow. There was so much of it and it was so heavy that the Metrodome deflated. It looks quite sad whenever we drive by!
January brought a celebration of our great niece's life and a fundraiser for her family. As you can see, the kids had a wonderful time!
February brought Mango's 10th birthday. She is getting so tall, but has retained all of the joy, friendless, and silliness that she came to us with. (Ignore the laundry baskets in the background - they are clean!)
This is Cooper. He doesn't normally sit still. You know that saying about "it would be like herding cats"? Well, this dog does herd cats - especially when they manage to escape outside. The cats do not appreciate it at all, but the humans find in hysterical every single time!
March brought Lily's 13th birthday, so we are now a three teenager household. All prayers are appreciated.
We are hoping March will also bring the end of the snow. We are supposed to have temperatures in the 50's this week. Mango and Monkey spent some time outside this evening building what (we hope) are the last snowmen of the year.
As you know, March also brought news of the horrific earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The morning we woke to the news, we talked with Tianyu on Facebook. She was home alone, riding out the frequent aftershocks, and waiting for her father to return. I wanted so badly to be able to give her a hug and make it better. (Actually what I wanted was to somehow magically just transport her back here.) By the next morning, we had heard from each of our recent students to know that they and their families are okay, but feeling very devastated. Please do not grow weary of praying for these people and their country. It is not just a far-away place, it is a place full of very real and very hurting people.